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Manfred received a PhD in Geophysics from the University of Kiel, Germany, after spending one year as a graduate student at the Californian Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, USA (CalTech). After a two-year Post-Doctoral Fellowship at CalTech, where he was involved in high-pressure geophysical and planetary sciences (impact cratering) research, he held a position as staff scientist/glaciologist at the Alfred-Wegener-Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) in Bremerhaven, Germany.
During the last two years of his tenure at the AWI, he was the Director of the German Global Change Secretariat, an institution under the Federal Ministry for Research and Technology. From 1992 to 1995, he was the Director of the Arctic Centre at the University of Lapland in Rovaniemi, Finland, where he started various initiatives related to global change impact research in the European Arctic.
Between 1995 and 2007, Manfred was appointed Full Professor in Geophysics and was the Director of the Institute for Geophysics at the University of Münster, Germany. Since 1998, he was also the Director of the Center for Environmental Research (CER), a central institute at the University of Münster. Manfred has been coordinator of numerous projects under the Fourth and Fifth Framework Programme of the European Union and the European Science Foundation and coordinates various nationally funded research projects. In 2003, he spent six months as a guest scientist at the Foundation for Research and Technology, Hellas in Heraklion, Greece.
Since September 2007, he is the founding Director of the Energy, Environment and Water Research Center of the Cyprus Institute. Manfred maintains his involvement in physical glaciology related to the fate of the cryosphere under conditions of climate change and to a lesser degree in planetary sciences with specific emphasis on impact cratering processes.
Assessment of climate change impacts through integrated assessment (models) and the specification of possible mitigation and adaptation strategies with a particular focus on natural resources and ecosystem services (e.g., energy and water).